The Right Stuff (2-Disc Special Edition)
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Right Stuff, The: Special Edition (Dbl DVD)
Philip Kaufman's intimate epic about the Mercury astronauts (based on Tom Wolfe's book) was one of the most ambitious and spectacularly exciting movies of the 1980s. It surprised almost everybody by not becoming a smash hit. By all rights, the film should have been every bit the success that Apollo 13 would later become; The Right Stuff is not only just as thrilling, but it is also a bigger and better movie. Combining history (both established and revisionist), grand mythmaking (and myth puncturing), adventure, melodrama, behind-the-scenes dish, spectacular visuals, and a down-to-earth sense of humor, The Right Stuff chronicles NASA's efforts to put a man in orbit. Such an achievement would be the first step toward President Kennedy's goal of reaching the moon, and, perhaps most important of all, would win a crucial public relations/morale victory over the Soviets, who had delivered a stunning blow to American pride by launching Sputnik, the first satellite. The movie contrasts the daring feats of the unsung test pilots--one of whom, Chuck Yeager, embodied more than anyone else the skill and spirit of Wolfe's title--against the heavily publicized (and sanitized) accomplishments of the Mercury astronauts. Through no fault of their own, the spacemen became prisoners of the heroic images the government created for them in order to capture the public's imagination. The casting is inspired; the film features Sam Shepard as the legendary Yeager, Ed Harris as John Glenn, Dennis Quaid as "Gordo" Cooper, Scott Glenn as Alan Shepard, Fred Ward as Gus Grissom, Scott Wilson as Scott Crossfield, and Pamela Reed and Veronica Cartwright are superb in their thankless roles as astronauts' wives. --Jim Emerson --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.See all Product Description
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This 30th Anniversary Edition of The Right Stuff debut on blu-ray with MPEG-4 AVC (22.50 Mpbs) 1080p 1.85:1 encode. After undergoing a meticulous restoration prior to its 2003 DVD release, this HD transfer raises the bar yet again. The biggest difference lies in the removal of dozens of errant marks that littered the DVD. With such annoyances gone, we are left with a spotless, perfectly balanced image featuring slightly enhanced contrast and clarity. The letters that signify location are markedly sharper than they are on the DVD, and close-ups possess more impact (check out the shot of Cooper reflected in the nurse's eyeglasses), highlighting a host of fine facial details. This transfer offers a pleasingly film-like image that is consistently detailed, fine-grained and colourful with a widely varying palette. The 193 minute length is a little too long. (4.5/5)
A film that wins Academy Awards for Best Sound and Best Sound Effects Editing demands a strong audio track, and Warner delivers with a highly immersive Dolby TrueHD 5.1 mix that is smoother, richer, and more nuanced than the previous lossy Dolby Digital 5.1 track. Bill Conti's Oscar-winning music score adds an air of majesty to the proceedings, exhibiting great depth of tone as it sweeps across all my nine speakers. Best of all, no hiss, pops, or crackles disrupt the audio's purity, making this finely tuned mix one of the best restored 1980s tracks. (4.5/5)
In 1984, The Right Stuff won 4 Oscars: Best Original Score (Bill Conti), Best Sound, Best Film Editing, and Best Sound Effects. It was also nominated in 4 other categories: Best Picture, Best Supporting Actor (Sam Sheppard), Best Cinematography and Best Art Direction.Read more ›
It's strange that a Venezuelan-born like me should talk about a movie like this, but I feel that "The Right Stuff" should have been a classic -well, it is for me. The story of the "Mercury" astronauts is portrayed marvelously by Philip Kaufman's direction, showcased beautifully by Caleb Deschanel's stylish photography, and supported by an incredible cast including Scott Glenn, Ed Harris, Barbara Hershey, Sam Shepard, Pamela Reed, Kim Stanley, and Veronica Cartwright.
In fact, I remember when I was watching that movie at home, and my late father asked me if a man that appeared on the screen was astronaut John Glenn because he looked just like him. Of course I told him he was an actor who was playing his role. That said, it's incredible to see how Ed Harris is perfectly cast as Glenn.
And I don't want to forget one of the reasons why I love this movie, and that's Bill Conti's spectacular music score. Of course it may sound a little like Holst's "The Planets", but I usually weep every time I listen to the main theme.
I'm glad that a special edition DVD of "The Right Stuff" has been released, with fantastic extras that include new interviews with the cast and crew, deleted scenes, and an incredible documentary on John Glenn. I'm also glad about it because I think that this movie should be rightfully appreciated not only because it deals with historical events like the breaking of the sound barrier and the first American astronauts, but also because, as I said before, this is a classic.
The second DVD features two scene specific audio commentaries. This is a recent trend that eliminates dead air by only showing footage from the movie that features comments from the participants. The first track features a good portion of the cast, from the major players like Ed Harris and Dennis Quaid, to minor ones like Donald Moffat and Pamela Reed. The track starts off appropriately with Chuck Yeager's comments on the factuality of the scene where he breaks the sound barrier. The cast all tell good stories about making the movie and one gets the impression that the actors who played the astronauts really bonded while filming-a connection that still stands today.
The second track features select crew from the movie. It is more informative and technical in nature.
"Realizing The Right Stuff" is an excellent retrospective documentary on the making of the film, from the optioning of Tom Wolfe's book to the end of principal photography. The cast and crew tell all sorts of fascinating stories, however, the difficulties with William Goldman's initial drafts of the screenplay are not even mentioned (for more on this check out Tom Charity's BFI book).
"T-20 Years and Counting" documents the post-production process. This was before CGI and so all the special effects were achieved simply, using models and other low tech methods with results that still hold up today.Read more ›
Most recent customer reviews
Great movie, captures what truly happened in the large picturePublished 3 months ago by Alberta Steve
Great service - great product and a personal note. Thanks. Good job well done.Published 7 months ago by Bill Lewis
Well done a little too long and a bit dated but seems fairly factual with a great collection of actorsPublished 13 months ago by BearLover